Sunday 31 August 2014

You are your time

Time has become an extremely valuable good. In this time of "Beschleunigung" - acceleration, we have to spend our time in a responsible way and we may have to justify our time use to our boss, our family members and to ourselves.

What we spend our time on, will be highly dependent on our identity, including our hierarchy of values. We may spend time to our job, to our partner and our children, to our hobby or to contemplation. But we may also lose time in traffic, or lose time on the internet reading and writing a lot of Facebook idleness.

Our identity determines our time use. We have to be aware, however, that the opposite is also true: our time use determines our identity. Therefore, an important question is: does my time use reflect my identity, does it reflect the person I want to be? If not, I am actually a slave and should be doing something else.

Most people complain they spend too much time at work and on the Internet in general and not enough to family. I rarely hear people say they spend too much time with their children. I also rarely hear people say they don't spend enough time on Facebook. In general, we tend to do too much activities that keep the mind restless and the body inactive. We don't spend enough time on children, parents and neighbours, activities that keep the body active and appease the mind.

It means we do not truly master our time, we have become the slave of time consuming addictions. Internet addiction has become a real threat for education. It is an addiction comparable to alcohol or tobacco addiction. This addiction is not totally new; television addiction is a problem reported already 40 years ago. But the level of interactivity and instant rewarding (likes) of the Internet brings the information addiction to the next level. The challenge in educating the next generation is to learn the children to master their time. We can only do this if we master our time ourselves. So let me stop here and spend some time with the children...

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Wim, I agree with your observations. Of course, we should not only consider the internet as a threat for education, but also as a (still underutilised) learning resource. Teaching children and students on how to find their way in the information overload and on how to use the internet as an additional means for communication in a responsible way, are important tasks for our teachers.